If you’re a fan of fruit cake and marzipan then you’ll love this Simnel Cake recipe! The delicious spiced fruit cake has a layer of marzipan baked inside it as well as being decorated with toasted marzipan. And if you’re interested in the history, the tradition of eating Simnel cake at Easter dates back to medieval times and the 11 balls of marzipan on top are thought to signify the 12 apostles, minus bad boy Judas! So now you know!
- 225 g Baking Spread Stork
- 225 g Soft Brown sugar
- 4 x Eggs
- 225 g Self Raising Flour
- Zest of 2 Unwaxed Lemons
- 1/2 tsp Ground Cinnamon
- 1 tsp Ground Mixed Spice
- 350 g Dried Mixed Fruit & Peel
- 100 g Glace Cherries quartered
- 850 g Marzipan
- 2 tbsp Smooth Apricot Jam
- 1 x Egg
- Pre-heat the oven to 150C / 130Fan / 300F / Gas 2 and grease and line an 8” round deep baking tin.
- Roll out around 250g of the marzipan to a thickness of about ½ cm and using the bottom of the tin as a guide, cut out a circle of marzipan the same size and put to one side.
- Place the Stork and sugar into a large bowl and cream together until fluffy.
- Then beat in the eggs and lemon zest until lump free.
- Add the flour and spices and continue to mix until thoroughly combined.
- Finally stir in the mixed fruit, peel and cherries.
- Carefully spoon half of the mixture into the lined baking tin and level it out.
- Place the circle or marzipan into the tin on top of the mixture and then spoon the rest of the other half of the mixture on top of the marzipan again smoothing it out so it’s level.
- Bake for about two hours until well risen and firm.
- Leave to cool for around 10 minutes before turning it out of the tin onto a wire rack.
- When it is completely cool, brush the top of the cake with the apricot jam.
- Using another 250g of the remaining marzipan, cut another ½ cm thick circle to fit the top of the cake.
- Carefully place the circle on top of the cake and crimp the edges, then weigh out 11x 15g lumps of marzipan and roll them into balls.
- Brush the marzipan on top of the cake with beaten egg then place the balls evenly around the top of the cake and brush them with egg as well. Then using either a blowtorch or a hot grill, carefully brown the top of the marzipan. If using a grill, do not take your eye off the cake as it will take less than 2 mins and can easily burn if you leave it too long.
- Finally, place the cake onto a board or a plate and then use the remainder of the marzipan to make little balls to go around the base of the cake. You will need approx 45x 2g balls to go around the cake and they can be attached with water or edible glue.